Children’s Lincoln Book List

By Erin Carlson Mast, Callie Hawkins, and Jamie Cooper

Welcome to the fourth installment of the President Lincoln’s Cottage Book List.  Drawing from staff favorites and best selling titles in our Museum Store, we have created a list of Lincoln and Civil War books specifically for youth aged 4-12.   We hope this list is useful for parents and grandparents, educators, and young scholars! 

The Boy Who Looked Like Lincoln, by Mike Reiss, (Penguin Group)
Ages: 4-8
From a writer for the Simpsons comes this imaginative book about a boy who, at a very young age, looks exactly like Lincoln did during his presidency.  After coping with endless teasing from “normal” kids, young Benjy has the opportunity to meet other children who “Look Like Things” (a kid who looks like a toaster, anyone?) and comes to appreciate that what makes us different can make us great. This is our staff favorite!  

Abe Lincoln and the Muddy Pig, by Stephen Krensky and Greshom Griffith (Simon and Schuster)
Ages: 3-8 (Level 2 Reading)

This fun book tells the story of young Abraham Lincoln and his compassion towards animals, especially a small pig that was trapped in a muddy situation.

Lincoln and His Boys, by Rosemary Wells and P.J. Lynch (Candlewick Press)
Ages: Ages 9-12

Through beautiful illustrations and words from the perspective of Willie and Tad Lincoln, readers will see the 16th President in whole new light.

Abe Lincoln’s Hat, by Martha Brenner (Random House)
Ages: 4-8 (Level 3 Reading)

As a lawyer, Abraham Lincoln was trusted and admired by many and became known for his signature stovepipe hat. In this charming story for young children, learn how Lincoln quickly realized his hat could come in handy for more than covering his head!

Abe, The Boy Who Loved Books, by Kay Winters (Penguin Group)
Ages: 4-8

As a young boy, Abraham Lincoln loved to read and found comfort in the words he read. In this beautifully illustrated book, young readers are introduced to Lincoln and the importance words played in shaping his life.

Pink and Say, by Patricia Polacco (Philomel)
Ages: 8+

This moving book by Polacco gives an account of the emotional experience two very young Union soldiers went through as they tried to outlast the conflict by taking care of one another.  (Due to content about prisoner of war situations and the execution of one of the characters, we have modified the age recommendation given by the publisher. For younger children, parental guidance is recommended.)

Abraham Lincoln (Bicentennial Edition), by Ingri and Edgar Parin D’Aulaire (Beautiful Feet Books, Inc.)
Ages: 4-8

Starting with his childhood, this classic children’s biography describes Abraham Lincoln and his interactions with others while illustrating the life and times of the author of the Emancipation Proclamation.

Abe Lincoln Goes to Washington (1837-1865), by Cheryl Harness (Random House)
Ages: 9-12

A biography of Lincoln with full color illustrations leads the reader through the second half of Lincoln’s life focusing on his early political life, rise to the presidency, the Civil War and the Emancipation Proclamation.

Abraham Lincoln, by Tanya Lee Stone (Penguin Group)
Ages: 9-12

This Lincoln biography contains an overview of Lincoln’s life illustrated with period photographs, perfect for the young scholar.

Mrs. Lincoln’s Dressmaker: The Unlikely Friendship of Elizabeth Keckley and Mary Todd Lincoln, by Lynda Jones (Random House)
Ages: 9-12

Jones brings the compelling story of Mary Lincoln and Elizabeth Keckley to a youth audience.

View these past President Lincoln’s Cottage Book Lists:

Check back for the final President Lincoln’s Cottage Book List:

  • Lincoln’s Own “Summer” Reading List
Mr. Cooper is the Senior Visitor Services Associate, Ms. Hawkins, the Education Coordinator, and Ms. Mast, the Curator for President Lincoln’s Cottage.

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